• Flint River Eco Study

River Project Highlight! The Round Goby!

(Team member Alex holding a recently caught goby)

Neogobius melanostomus, or the round goby is a smaller invasive fish found in the Great Lakes region. Goby's have a large blunt head with partly dorsal eyes. They are typically tan grey with small dark blotches on the sides. They were discovered in the Great Lakes region in 1990 and were believed to be introduced accidentally from ocean fighters traveling from the goby's native home of Eastern Europe/ Middle east (specifically the Black, Caspian, and Azov seas) (Bohling, 2016). Goby's are an aggressive competitor for both food and spawning sites making them a threat to native species. Goby are spring and summer spawners and have a rapid growth rate reaching up to 10 inches. Goby's are benthic (bottom feeding) and are becoming an important food source for smallmouth bass.


Mary Bohling, Michigan State University Extension, Michigan Sea Grant, and Bindu Bhakta, MSU Extension. (2016, February 25). National Invasive Species Awareness Week: Round goby. MSU Extension. Retrieved December 18, 2021, from

Smith, G. R., & Damstra, E. S. (2010). Round Goby . In Guide to great lakes fishes (pp. 82-83). essay, Michigan Sea Grant.

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